World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Republic Day (India)


Republic Day (India)

Republic Day
Soldiers of the Madras Regiment during the annual Republic Day Parade in 2004
Observed by India
Celebrations Parades, distribution of sweets in schools and cultural dances
Begins 26 January
Ends 29 January
Date 26 January
Next time 26 January 2015 (2015-01-26)
Frequency annual

In India, Republic Day honours the date on which the Constitution of India came into force on 26 January 1950 replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India.[1]

The Constitution was passed by the Constituent Assembly of India on 26 November 1949 but was adopted on 26 January 1950 with a democratic government system, completing the country's transition toward becoming an independent republic. 26 January was selected for this purpose because it was this day in 1930 when the Declaration of Indian Independence (Purna Swaraj) was proclaimed by the Indian National Congress.

It is one of three national holidays in India, other two being Independence Day and Gandhi Jayanti.


  • History 1
  • Celebrations 2
    • Delhi Republic Day parade 2.1
    • Beating Retreat 2.2
  • Gallery 3
  • Chief guest 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6


President Rajendra Prasad (in the horse-drawn carriage) readies to take part in the first Republic Day parade on Rajpath, New Delhi, in 1950.

India achieved independence from British rule on 15 August 1947 following the the Earl Mountbatten as governor-general. The country, though, did not yet have a permanent constitution; instead its laws were based on the modified colonial Government of India Act 1935. On 28 August 1947, the Drafting Committee was appointed to draft a permanent constitution, with Dr.B. R. Ambedkar as chairman. While India's Independence Day celebrates its freedom from British Rule, the Republic Day celebrates of coming into force of its constitution.

A draft constitution was prepared by the committee and submitted to the Assembly on 4 November 1947.[3] The Assembly met, in sessions open to public, for 166 days, spread over a period of 2 years, 11 months and 18 days before adopting the Constitution. After many deliberations and some modifications, the 308 members of the Assembly signed two hand-written copies of the document (one each in Hindi and English) on 24 January 1950. Two days later, it came into effect throughout the nation.


The main Republic Day celebration is held in the national capital, New Delhi, at the Rajpath before the President of India. On this day, ceremonious parades take place at the Rajpath, which are performed as a tribute to India.

In 2014, on the occasion of the 65th Republic Day, the Protocol Department of the Government of Maharashtra held its first parade on the lines of the Delhi Republic Day parade along the entire stretch of Marine Drive in Mumbai.

Delhi Republic Day parade

To mark the importance of the occasion, every year a grand parade is held in the capital, New Delhi, from the Raisina Hill near the Rashtrapati Bhavan (the President's residence), along the Rajpath, past India Gate.[4] Prior to its commencement, the Prime Minister lays a floral wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti, a memorial to unknown soldiers at the India Gate at one end of Rajpath, which is followed by two minutes silence in the memory of unknown soldiers. It is a solemn reminder of the sacrifice of the martyrs who died for the country in the freedom movement and the succeeding wars for the defence of sovereignty of their country. Thereafter he/she reaches the main dais at Rajpath to join other dignitaries, subsequently the President arrives along with the chief guest of the occasion. They are escorted on horseback by the President's Bodyguard.

Beating Retreat

The Beating Retreat ceremony officially denotes the end of Republic Day festivities. It is conducted on the evening of 29 January, the third day after the Republic Day. It is performed by the bands of the three wings of the military, the Indian Army, Indian Navy and Indian Air Force. The venue is Raisina Hills and an adjacent square, Vijay Chowk, flanked by the North and South block of the Rashtrapati Bhavan (President's Palace) towards the end of Rajpath.

The Chief Guest of the function is the President of India who arrives escorted by the (PBG), a cavalry unit. When the President arrives, the PBG commander asks the unit to give the National Salute, which is followed by the playing of the Indian National Anthem, Jana Gana Mana, by the Army developed the ceremony of display by the massed bands in which Military Bands, Pipe and Drum Bands, Buglers and Trumpeters from various Army Regiments besides bands from the Navy and Air Force take part which play popular tunes like Abide With Me, Mahatma Gandhi's favourite hymn, and Saare Jahan Se Achcha at the end.[5][6][7]


Chief guest

Countries invited as chief guests for the Republic Day parade. Erstwhile Yugoslavia (twice invited) has not been depicted in the map.
Since 1950, India has been hosting head of state or government of another country as the state guest of honour for Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi. During 1950-1954, Republic Day celebrations were organized at different venues (like Irwin Stadium, Kingsway, Red Fort and Ramlila Grounds).[8] It was only starting 1955 when the parade in its present form was organized at Rajpath.[8] The guest country is chosen after a deliberation of strategic, economic and political interests. During 1950s-1970s, a number of NAM and Eastern Bloc countries were hosted by India. In the post-Cold War era, India has also invited several Western leaders on a state visit during the Republic Day. It is notable that before India fought bloody wars with China and Pakistan, leaders from these countries were invited as state guests for the Republic Day celebrations. Interestingly, Pakistan Food and Agriculture Minister was the second state guest from that country for Republic Day in 1965, a few days after which the two countries went to a war. Countries which have been invited multiple times include India's neighbours (Bhutan, and Sri Lanka), defence allies (Russia/USSR, France and Britain), trade partners (Brazil) and NAM allies (Nigeria and erstwhile Yugoslavia). Bhutan and France have the distinction of being the guest of honour for the maximum (four) number of times followed by three visits each from Mauritius and USSR/Russia.
Year Guest Name Country Note
1950 President Sukarno  Indonesia
1954 King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck[9]  Bhutan
1955 Governor General Malik Ghulam Muhammad[10]  Pakistan First guest for parade at Rajpath [11]
1958 Marshall Ye Jianying[12]  China
1960 President Kliment Voroshilov[13]  Soviet Union
1961 Queen Elizabeth II[14]  United Kingdom
1963 King Norodom Sihanouk[15]  Cambodia
1965 Food and Agriculture Minister Rana Abdul Hamid  Pakistan 2nd invitation
1968 Prime Minister Alexei Kosygin  Soviet Union 2nd invitation
President Josip Broz Tito[16]  Yugoslavia
1969 Prime Minister Todor Zhivkov[17]  Bulgaria
1971 President Julius Nyerere[18]  Tanzania
1972 Prime Minister Seewoosagur Ramgoolam [19]  Mauritius
1973 President Mobutu Sese Seko[20]  Zaire
1974 President Josip Broz Tito  Yugoslavia 2nd invitation
Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike[21]  Sri Lanka
1975 President Kenneth Kaunda[22]  Zambia
1976 Prime Minister Jacques Chirac[23]  France
1977 First Secretary Edward Gierek[24]  Poland
1978 President Patrick Hillery[25]  Ireland
1979 Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser[26]  Australia
1980 President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing  France
1981 President Jose Lopez Portillo[27]  Mexico
1982 King Juan Carlos I[28]  Spain
1983 President Shehu Shagari[29]  Nigeria
1984 King Jigme Singye Wangchuck[30]  Bhutan 2nd invitation
1985 President Raúl Alfonsín[31]  Argentina
1986 Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou[32]  Greece
1987 President Alan Garcia[33]  Peru
1988 President Junius Jayewardene[34]  Sri Lanka 2nd invitation
1989 General Secretary Nguyen Van Linh[35]  Vietnam
1990 Prime Minister Anerood Jugnauth[36]  Mauritius 2nd invitation
1991 President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom[37]  Maldives
1992 President Mário Soares[37]  Portugal
1993 Prime Minister John Major[37]  United Kingdom 2nd invitation
1994 Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong[37]  Singapore
1995 President Nelson Mandela[38]  South Africa
1996 President Fernando Henrique Cardoso[39]  Brazil
1997 Prime Minister Basdeo Panday[39]  Trinidad and Tobago
1998 President Jacques Chirac[39]  France 3rd invitation
1999 King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev[39]    Nepal
2000 President Olusegun Obasanjo[40]  Nigeria 2nd invitation
2001 President Abdelaziz Bouteflika[40]  Algeria
2002 President Cassam Uteem[40]  Mauritius 3rd invitation
2003 President Mohammed Khatami[40]  Iran
2004 President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva [41]  Brazil 2nd invitation
2005 King Jigme Singye Wangchuck[41]  Bhutan 3rd invitation
2006 King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud[41]  Saudi Arabia
2007 President Vladimir Putin[41]  Russia 3rd invitation
2008 President Nicolas Sarkozy[41]  France 4th invitation
2009 President Nursultan Nazarbayev[41]  Kazakhstan
2010 President Lee Myung Bak[42]  South Korea
2011 President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono[43][44]  Indonesia 2nd invitation
2012 Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra[45]  Thailand
2013 King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck[46]  Bhutan 4th invitation
2014 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe[47]  Japan
2015 President Barack Obama  United States First US President to be invited.[48]

See also


  1. ^ "Introduction to Constitution of India". Ministry of Law and Justice of India. 29 July 2008. Retrieved 14 October 2008. 
  2. ^ "Indian Independence Act 1947".  
  3. ^ Constituent Assembly (DEBATES)- Parliament of India
  4. ^ "India Celebrates 63rd Republic Day". Eastern Fare. 26 January 2012. Retrieved 22 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "Curtain Raiser – Beating Retreat Ceremony 2011". Ministry of Defence. 28 January 2011. 
  6. ^ "Beating Retreat weaves soul-stirring musical evening". The Times of India. 29 Jan 2011. 
  7. ^ "Martial music rings down the curtain". The Times of India. 30 Jan 2011. 
  8. ^ a b "Yog Sandesh Jan-10 English". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  9. ^ "Selected works of Jawaharlal Nehru". 
  10. ^
  11. ^ Rajan, Mannaraswamighala Sreeranga (1964). "India in world affairs, 1954-56". 
  12. ^ Deepak, B. R (2005-01-01). "India & China, 1904-2004: A century of peace and conflict".  
  13. ^ Prasad, Rajendra (1984). "Dr. Rajendra Prasad: Correspondence and Select Documents".  
  14. ^ "Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, News Photo, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth be". 1961-01-26. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  15. ^ "Indian Information". 1962. 
  16. ^ "visit to New Delhi of Mr Kosygin on the occasion of Republic Day - Google zoeken". 2013-11-02. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  17. ^ "Asian Recorder". 1969. 
  18. ^ "India". 1971. 
  19. ^ "Foreign Affairs Record". 1972. 
  20. ^ Reed, Sir Stanley (1974). "The Times of India Directory and Year Book Including Who's who". 
  21. ^ "Indian and Foreign Review". 1973. 
  22. ^ Lok Sabha (1975). "Lok Sabha Debates". 
  23. ^
  24. ^ "The Eastern Economist". 1977. 
  25. ^ "Patrick J. Hillery". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  26. ^ "Bilateral Visits". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  27. ^ "MEA | MEA Links : Indian Missions Abroad". 2013-09-23. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  28. ^ "MEA | MEA Links : Indian Missions Abroad". 2013-09-23. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  29. ^ "MEA | MEA Links : Indian Missions Abroad". 2013-09-23. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  30. ^ "MEA | MEA Links : Indian Missions Abroad". 2013-09-23. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  31. ^ "Sorry for the inconvenience". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  32. ^ "Sorry for the inconvenience". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  33. ^ "". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  34. ^ "". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  35. ^ "". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  36. ^
  37. ^ a b c d "Choosing R-Day chief guest: Behind the warm welcome, a cold strategy". Indian Express. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  38. ^ "General South African History timeline" Accessed on 13 June 2008.
  39. ^ a b c d "Choosing R-Day chief guest: Behind the warm welcome, a cold strategy". Indian Express. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  40. ^ a b c d "Choosing R-Day chief guest: Behind the warm welcome, a cold strategy". Indian Express. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  41. ^ a b c d e f "Choosing R-Day chief guest: Behind the warm welcome, a cold strategy". Indian Express. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  42. ^ "Choosing R-Day chief guest: Behind the warm welcome, a cold strategy". Indian Express. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  43. ^ "Indonesian President next R-Day parade chief guest - India News". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  44. ^ "Indonesian President next R-Day parade chief guest – India News".  
  45. ^ New Delhi, 2 Dec (IANS) (20 January 2012). "Thai PM to be chief guest on India's Republic Day". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  46. ^ "India invites King of Bhutan as chief guest at Republic Day celebrations". 2013-01-26. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  47. ^ "India likely to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as Republic Day chief guest : India, News - India Today". Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  48. ^
    Narendra Modi.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.